Kashmir besieged on Afzal Guru’s first anniversary

Shah Abbas


A complete shutdown was observed on the first day of three days strike call given by almost all the separatist organizations to remember Parliament attack convict Mohammad Afzal Guru, who was hanged last year on the same day in Tihar jail Delhi and buried inside the jail premises.

Authorities had imposed strict restrictions in the city to thwart any protests and hundreds of police and CRPF personnel were deployed in every nook and corner.

Police arrested hundreds of separatist leaders and activists since last three days to “maintain law and order”.

JKLF Chairman had avoided his arrest by going in hiding only to get arrested on Sunday in Maisuma area when he tried to march towards Lal Chowk.

Independent lawmaker, Er Rashid also tried to lead a protest march from his official residence in Jawhar Nagar but was arrested.

Common people in the old and civil lines areas of the city were confined to their residences by erecting concertina wires and other barricades on the main roads and by lanes.

Police sources told Kashmir Life that “some security measures” have been taken only to maintain law and order and to safeguard the lives and property of the people”. They added that by and large same “security measures” will remain in place for the coming two more days.

Pertinently, Kashmir will be observing 30 death anniversary of Mohammad Maqbool Bhat, who too was hanged in Tihar jail in 1984.

In the absence of mobile internet services in the valley which has been suspended by the authorities, reports said that complete shutdown was observed in all the districts of Kashmir.

Shops and business establishments are closed and traffic is off the roads. The people of Shopian, a southern town were woken up by “revolutionary songs” played by the loudspeakers in the mosques which continued playing till afternoon.

Police sources said that despite restrictions, protests were held in Ladoora and Doabgah areas, in Sopore, the native town of Afzal Guru. Minor protests were also reported from Papchan Bandipora, Baramulla and Pampore.

However, police spokesman told Kashmir Life that the situation remained peaceful and no untoward incident took place in the valley.


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